California’s AB32 global warming law put on hold by judge

From the LA Times, some “climate justice” for the poor:

The California lawsuit was filed by six environmental groups that represent low-income communities, including the Association of Irritated Residents, based in the San Joaquin Valley, and Communities for A Better Environment, which fights pollution around the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

The groups contend that a cap-and-trade program would allow refineries, power plants and other big facilities in poor neighborhoods to avoid cutting emissions of both greenhouse gases and traditional air pollutants.

Full story here

h/t to WUWT readers Duke C. and Jeremy

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61 thoughts on “California’s AB32 global warming law put on hold by judge

  1. In a way this is good, because it shows people are realizing that cap-and-trade is primarily an economic program, and they are rejecting it. After all, the primary goal of cap-and-trade is for the traders to make money — all this fuss about emissions is just the means to an end. People who would like cleaner air in their vicinity are not necessarily going to get that.

    But it’s disappointing to see people still clinging to the notion that “carbon” is a bad thing. Air pollution may be a problem in California, but CO2 is not a pollutant. Hopefully that’s the next thing to get straightened out.

  2. I’m willing to bet my life’s savings that if the dirty industries being affected by the cap-and-trade law filed the lawsuit for the exact same reason, the same San Francisco judge would not have put an injunction on the law.

  3. More than one in five (21%) of California small-business owners do not expect to be in business in California in three years, according to a recent survey by Small Business California, an advocacy group in San Francisco. (Read the story at link below.)

    http://jan.ocregister.com/2011/03/08/are-calif-businesses-closing-or-leaving/55995/

    IF AB32 is enacted, you can expect a lot more then 1 in 5 small businesses leaving the state; you can expect medium and large businesses leaving too. IF the object of AB32 is to generate major unemployment and high energy costs, Sacramento has found the way with this law.

    The STUPID Politicians that are in office who support AB32 are living in a dream world. They fantasize that AB32 is going to generate all sorts of green technology that will create jobs. Yet, two different studies in Spain and England say, it destroys jobs.

    At one time, California was a great place, BUT the STUPID Ultra-Liberals took over and are really making a mess of this state. At least the Judge gave us a break from some of their stupidity.

    Bob Diaz

  4. So essentially the law site is about the law not being harsh enough in destroying industry???

    Mailman

  5. They filed the lawsuit because the loony law does not go far enough? It does not manage to shut down power production or dramatically increase the rates for these so-called poor people, so the law must be rewritten by the court? Are these robot power plants that do not employ humans? Are these people insane?

  6. The article explicity states that California did not adequately consider a straight carbon tax rather than cap and trade. Cap and trade creates mechanism where proxies collect the carbon taxes from a trading carbon emissions (paying a commision to the trader) by energy and fuel companies and then everyone pays the taxes through energy and fuel bills. Carbon taxes are much more direct and don’t let the legislature hide behind the proxies. If California charges carbon taxes directly, will the citizens of the state find it as popular at the citizens of Australia who are looking at carbon taxes in the near future?

  7. Technically my post was right before the Dukes, but who’s counting? :)

    REPLY: Sorry, sometimes it is the one seen first. – Anthony

  8. I doubt that this will help much. The decision belongs to the ‘environmental justice’ movement, which says that poor people should be surrounded by pure natural wilderness with NO JOBS. In other words, EJ’s goal is to turn Western countries into Haiti. (Detroit is already halfway there!)

    The Calif governor and legislature will now proceed to make the law more acceptable to EJ. The obstacle to cap-n-trade won’t matter much because cap-n-trade is already fading; and I guarantee the alternative will be worse.

  9. “… the Association of Irritated Residents?” Obviously chose for the abbreviation (what a bunch of airheads), but I like “irritated.” If I were in Japan, I could start a group of irritated & irradiated curmudgeons.

    > Another case of doing the right thing for the wrong reason.

    In politics, that’s often as good as it gets.

    At the New Hampshire house committee on Science, Technology, and Energy, only one person who testified against NH pulling out of RGGI, our cap & trade system, testified on scientific grounds. All the rest referred to the loss of RGGI proceeds that a pull out would cause.

    It’s no longer about the science, it’s all about passing money around.

  10. I stopped reading when the article made the claim that the recent ballot initiative to stop this madness was funded by the oil industry.

    The LA times will never let go of a usefull lie.

  11. I fully agree Karen D. Cap N Trade will pose a greater danger to the environment than any economic law we’ve ever passed because puts everything that is composed of carbon into the hands of traders. This means every living thing, and much of none living things. Traders don’t give a damn about anything but making money. That is why there is so much secret funding by industry for the global warming non-sense and Cap N Trade.

  12. All carbon taxing schemes and tradeing scheme will drive up the cost of energy hurting the poor the most. Fat cat traders will scam the system pulling the money form the poor and middle class and when the scam collapses there will be lots of socialism for Wall St. to prevent big buisness losses and Main St. will be the source for the bail outs just like the Asset Backed Paper fiasco of 2009/2010.

  13. Karen D, I know we say that a lot, that carbon dioxide in the atmosphere *isn’t* a pollutant, but is that really true? Why isn’t an excess created by human industry considered “pollution” in the sense that it’s not there until we put it there by essentially dumping it in the air as industrial waste? Carbon monoxide occurs naturally in the air, but when there’s lots of it created by vehicle emissions, we consider that “smog” and think of it as pollution, right?

    I’m not claiming you’re wrong, I’m simply wrestling with this concept. I suspect there’s something fishy about your concept of pollution or mine and I’d like to get to the bottom of it.

  14. The eco-Hatfields are firing a fusillade at the eco-McCoys. Fun to watch, but I don’t expect anything good to come out of it.

  15. I see in the full story that the air board has a “global warming plan”.
    So it thinks warming is a good thing, then, and it needs to be planned properly?

  16. This is fun – a real performance. Waiting for Mrs. Pelosi etc to pick this up, pointing on the forces of evil (big oil, gas, whatever).
    A newspaper that is agenda-driven, really poor. A state that is exporting jobs and is, after years and years of liberal policy close to bankruptcy is trying to wipe out the rest of its industry and power generating capacity. Go, California!! If one wants to understand why California is in the toilet, see this discussion and the initiatives.

    Not being US-American it is sad to see the US going down for internal stupidities, as if there arent enough external challenges. Admitted that it is not better in Germany …

  17. Sean says:
    March 22, 2011 at 9:55 am

    ‘California did not adequately consider a straight carbon tax rather than cap and trade. Cap’

    Unless I missed something the California law allows offsets that don’t need to be located within California in typical NIMBY fashion. Hence Washington State and Oregon are being carpeted with windfarms.

  18. My take on the decision is that an activist judge bought into the social justice argument that poor people living near carbon emitting industries must be protected by forcing big emitters to reduce emissions or close their plants. He questioned the trade part of cap and trade that he sees as allowing big emitters to maintain the status quo, or even expanding, by purchasing carbon quotas and credits from others.

    This is a set back for those advocating for rational energy policies in CA no matter how you slice it.

  19. Time to uncap all those oil wells in So Cal, fit them with human-friendly enclosures and start pumping oil out of them. Only about 35% of the estimated recoverable oil was removed when those ugly, smelly donkey pumps were removed and the wells capped, when oil from Saudi Arabia got to be a few dollars cheaper per barrel, about 1957 or so.

    All of these other concepts are pie in the sky bye and bye, an d we need the oil, plus more and modern refineries . . . human-friendly ones. If more pipelines are needed, put them in place. If CA needs power, let Californians do their part.

    CO2 is the most beneficial of trace gases, and more of it would increase green plant growth and hardiness of the plants.

    Time do do away with the ignorant eco-whackos and get on with reality.

    I will be most pleased to put a simple arithmetical forth to demonstrate exactly why the “CO2 is bad ” idiocy is idiocy.

  20. M.A.DeLuca II says:
    March 22, 2011 at 10:43 am
    Karen D, I know we say that a lot, that carbon dioxide in the atmosphere *isn’t* a pollutant, but is that really true? Why isn’t an excess created by human industry considered “pollution” in the sense that it’s not there until we put it there by essentially dumping it in the air as industrial waste? Carbon monoxide occurs naturally in the air, but when there’s lots of it created by vehicle emissions, we consider that “smog” and think of it as pollution, right?

    I’m not claiming you’re wrong, I’m simply wrestling with this concept. I suspect there’s something fishy about your concept of pollution or mine and I’d like to get to the bottom of it.

    Pollution is the contamination of something with impurities which result in the contaminated item becoming inferior to what it was before the contamination occurred.

    To determine whether or not contamination has occurred, you must first determine the starting point of view. If you begin with the Earth’s earlier atmosphere, you would find that it was composed of >99 percent or 999,900 parts per million of carbon dioxide and was more than 100 times more massive than the present day atmosphere. Using that comparison, it would be an impossible task to find the addition of a few gigatons of carbon dioxide to an atmosphere having less than 1 percent carbon dioxide or only 350-380 parts per million as adulterating the condition of the earlier atmosphere.

    If you change your point of view to somewhere about 2.5 billion years ago, Life began to adulterate the atmosphere with massive quantities of Oxygen while it removed nearly all of the carbon dioxidde from the atmosphere and sequestered it in the lithosphere and biosphere. Oxygen could beregarded as a genuine pollutant, because it killed off most anaerobic lifeforms. Consequently, it would be fair to say all present day aerobic lifeforms are guilty of polluting the Earth’s atmosphere and environment with a deadly contaminant in the form of Oxygen while depleting the carbon dioxide vital to anaerobic and aerobic lifeforms.

    During the Phanerozoic Eon of the last ~560 million years, aerobic lifeforms, especially the Plant Kingdom, have further fluctuated polluting Oxygen while reducing atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide from about 10,000 parts per million to less than 300 parts per million. Plant life has aggresively consumed and depleted carbon dioxide to the point where it had to develop new methods of photosynthesis to survive the extremely low levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide it caused.

    Now we live in a period of time where humans have joined with the other lifeforms to interact with their environment and are polluting it with their presence and activities. The question must be asked whether human caused releases of carbon dioxide are adulterating and contaminating the atmosphere with overall detrimental consequences, or is it restoring the carbon dioxide and purity of the atmosphere with overall beneficial consequences after other lifeforms had polluted it with detrimental consequences?

  21. @harrywr2: I believe that Excelon recently sold them some. They are a merchant power company with a large nuke fleet in the midwest.

  22. So they want a tax to protect poor folks from CO2 pollution instead of cap and trade. If they exempt poor folks from paying such a tax in California (which they will want in such a bill so they can be seen as saviors), middle and high income earners will carry that tax burden. Since these same folks are the ones that create jobs, those jobs will fly out of California faster that you can say “idiot”. So tell me again how this tax will protect the poor? Tell me again how ANY CO2 mitigation will protect the poor??????

  23. D. Patterson says:
    March 22, 2011 at 12:04 pm

    Plant life has aggresively consumed and depleted carbon dioxide to the point where it had to develop new methods of photosynthesis to survive the extremely low levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide it caused.

    I have the impression you are mixing up photosynthesis and Calvin cycle (C3, C4 and CAM plants). If not, I would be interested in reading what the other methods of photosynthesis are.

  24. Isn’t that picture slick showing dihydrogen monoxide emissions?

    Thought they were going to tackle that in Cancun also.

  25. D. Patterson says:
    March 22, 2011 at 12:04 pm
    ======================
    I like the way you think ;-)

    A sensible person would be more concerned that CO2 levels are so low………………

  26. @polistra says:
    March 22, 2011 at 10:08 am
    I doubt that this will help much. The decision belongs to the ‘environmental justice’ movement, which says that poor people should be surrounded by pure natural wilderness with NO JOBS. In other words, EJ’s goal is to turn Western countries into Haiti. (Detroit is already halfway there!)

    REPLY: Interesting that you mentioned Detroit, I just saw in the WSJ that the latest census shows the population declined by 25%. See: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704461304576216850733151470.html

    Unlike the Haitians, the Detroiters can vote with their feet and drive away. I’m sure the environment just gets better & better….

  27. In the UK we have the climate change act – 80% reduction of CO2 by 2050..

    Chris Huhne – UK energy and Climate Change – Secretary of State, is lobbying hard to increasethe target of 20% reduction by 2020 to 30% by 2020 in the EU.

    I don’t see any UK judges challenging any of this craziness..

  28. “The California lawsuit was filed by six environmental groups that represent low-income communities, including…..”

    How poor do they think those communities will be after the low cost energy producers are destroyed, the jobs are gone, and energy costs increase sharply?

    I guess those poor people will be cold too, if they get rid of the power plants and all of those ‘heat trapping’ CO2 emissions! };>)

  29. The groups contend that a cap-and-trade program would allow refineries, power plants and other big facilities in poor neighborhoods to avoid cutting emissions of both greenhouse gases and traditional air pollutants.

    This is a quandry global warming will always find itself in. Cap N Trade never was about reducing emissions. But greens are thinking it is, and are looking for that in it. At some point greens will come to realize that they and global warming politicians are not after the same things.

  30. M.A.DeLuca II says:
    March 22, 2011 at 10:43 am

    Carbon monoxide occurs naturally in the air, but when there’s lots of it created by vehicle emissions, we consider that “smog” and think of it as pollution, right?

    I’m not claiming you’re wrong, I’m simply wrestling with this concept
    ============================================================
    Since you are wresling with this concept, I try to use my best non-violent communication skills, although my writing is sometimes very direct. No, CO2 is not smog. “Smog” was a word invented in L.A. – a combination of smoke and fog. It came to mean the dirty brown haze that hung over LA. since the 50’s. It was more technically know as “photochemical smog” to refer to all the compounds that were created with photochemical reactions in the atmosphere. The brown part of the haze was mostly NO2 (nitrogen dioxide), which was formed from the NO (nitric oxide) from automobile exhaust (mostly) reacting with sunlight. NO however, also reacted in sunlight with the hydrocarbons (unburned or partially burned fuel), again mostly from vehicle exhaust. One of the molecules produced by this reaction was ozone, which is a known health hazzard. There are lots of other compounds produced also. However, the amount of ozone in the air became the shorthand for the amount of photochemical smog (or just smog) in the air.

    Now about CO2, which is a colorless, odorless, trace gas in the atmosphere, which as has been pointed out again and again here at WUWT, is necessary for life. It is not smog, it is not a pollutant.

    Automobile exhaust consists of unreacted nitrogen that goes through the engine from the air taken in by the engine, and CO2 and water vapor as the main products of combustion of the fuel with the air. A very small part of the fuel and air doesn’t burn completely and forms CO (carbon monoxide), and over 150 different hydrocarbon compounds. In the engine cylinder, under high pressure and temperture, some of the nitrogen in air reacts with the oxygen in the air to form NO. In modern vehicles these compounds are converted to CO2, water, and N2 in the vehicle exhaust catalyst.

    So, short answer: CO2 is not smog and it not an air pollutant in the meaning of the U.S. Clean Air Act. I hope this has helped to reducie your wrestling, and provided some information to help you uncerstand what is admitedly complex chemistry .

  31. Have you got a bio on the head of the Association of Irritated Residents? I guess he or she would have the official title, “AIR Head.”

  32. Wow,
    Made it through all the comments on the article from the LA times, and I was surprised they read like they were posted here. Hardly a peep from the CAGW crowd citing consensus of scientists. And anyone who dared post in support of AGW- was beaten up pretty badly by some good intelligent replies. Is this a new trend or just a local aberration?

  33. Australia is sometimes liked to California – both in climate and in our laid back, easy going style.

    Our fine PM, good Queen Green-julia is doing her best to see that we follow California forward to the middle ages or even further forward than that.

    Whom am I, not to applaud?

    Yes if you must:
    / Sarc off

  34. Some folks think we rid ourselves of CO2 for the same reason we eliminate fecal matter — it is not good for us. It is a waste product. That’s actually not true of CO2. Without CO2 as a component of our bodies, we would die from suffocation.

  35. M.A.D. & D. Patterson;
    E.M. Smith, “Chiefio”, has a fine post here: http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/10/10/got-wood in which he explores the idea that plants tend to, and have, drive down the level of CO2 to the point of starving themselves. They then must wait for a major re-release of more from massive basalt flood volcanoes or other such events.

    We are (demonstrably) helping plants thrive by bringing levels up slightly. They’d actually prefer about 2,000 ppm, but even if we burned all the fossil fuel known to exist, all at once, we wouldn’t even get back to 1,000. Too bad!

    Releasing all the methane clathrates etc. would help, because they oxidize in a few years to H2O and CO2. And coking as much limestone as possible, etc., would also be good.

    :)

  36. Brian H says:
    March 22, 2011 at 10:37 pm

    Yes, aerobic lifeforms and the later invasion of plants on land are often identified as the causes of major changes in the biosphere, atmosphere, and climates. There is a considerable discussion of the role of the earliest trees in creating a global environmental crisis.

  37. Right, then. In short order of the replies:

    D.Patterson @12:04pm — Thanks, but you spent most of your reply discussing geological periods that really don’t apply to the discussion. If I read you correctly, you’re arguing that there have been a number of alterations of the earth’s atmosphere by processes and organisms over eons, and that humans are just the latest to do so. By that argument, nothing we spew into the atmosphere, whether directly to our benefit or as the byproduct of a separate process that is to our benefit, can be considered a pollutant.

    You did introduce the interesting notion that contaminants to a quantity that result in an inferior quantity are pollution, and while that seems helpful at first, it begs the question of “inferior to what according to whom?” In this instance, I’d hardly be able to get away with telling a global warming alarmist that the atmosphere after contamination with man-made CO2 isn’t inferior, now would I?

    Old Engineer @ 3:32pm — I introduced smog as an example of a legitimate pollutant, and wasn’t at all claiming that CO2 was a component in it. I mistakenly thought carbon monoxide was a component of smog, and knowing that CO is also naturally occurring, thought it’d make a good, accepted example of a naturally occurring gas that is considered a pollutant when humans make lots of it. And while I was wrong about carbon monoxide as a component of smog, it does contribute to the formation of smog, and is considered a pollutant when humans create it. (Perhaps by producing an inferior air quality as D. Patterson suggests.)

    Now while you conflated CO2 with my smog example, you bring up the potentially useful suggestion that CO2 isn’t a pollutant according to the Clean Air Act. BUT! The Clean Air Act isn’t a scientific document, it’s a political one, and I suspect that the recent actions of the EPA are an attempt to amend the Clean Air Act such that CO2 is now considered a pollutant. Thank you, though.

    Brian H. @ 10:37pm — I think this is the right track, thank you! CO2 is very useful to plants at levels three times higher than today, without any strong negative consequences (assuming the alarmist models are indeed wrong). But if CO2 really does contribute to global warming, then the waters become a bit less clear. It’s beneficial to plants, and the processes that produce it are beneficial to humans, but there might be negative consequences and D.Patterson’s idea suggests that the air could then be considered inferior in some ways when we add CO2.

    Folks, I suspect the problem is in the definition of the word “pollution” itself. Like pornography, it appears to be a word used less than technically to describe something a finger-waving scold knows when he or she sees it. It strikes me that refuting an environmentalist’s claim that CO2 is a pollutant isn’t as simple a thing as Karen D. originally suggested. I thank you all for your input; even though I find the matter unresolved, you’ve each pointed out interesting things to consider.

  38. M.A.De.
    Au contraire.
    Warming has a pretty much 100% correlation with boom times for humanity and every other species. Cooling, the reverse. Warming is a feature, not a bug.

  39. Brian H says on March 22, 2011 at 10:37 pm:

    We are (demonstrably) helping plants thrive by bringing levels up slightly. They’d actually prefer about 2,000 ppm, but even if we burned all the fossil fuel known to exist, all at once, we wouldn’t even get back to 1,000. Too bad!

    No problem. We just brew more beer, ferment more grapes and vent the CO2 to the air.

  40. From Harold Pierce Jr on March 23, 2011 at 1:00 am:

    No problem. We just brew more beer, ferment more grapes and vent the CO2 to the air.

    Great, now someone in Kalifornia is wondering how to (carbon) tax breweries and wineries. To be fair, they’ll also go after all those snooty micro-breweries and small pricey “family-owned” wineries. Then there’s all those many people making beer and wine at home. At least that segment is easy to take care of, they’ll just ban it outright by citing possible bacterial contamination thus an unacceptable health risk.

    Oh, and then there are the bakeries! Lots of yeast used, lots of CO2 released. They’ll have to insist on proper venting and continuous monitoring of the dangerous carbon pollution as it’s released. And what of homemade bread? Will they tax individual packets of yeast? What of the popular electric bread makers, just a one-time charge at purchase based of estimated usage, or expected lifetime of the unit? Of course, the Smart Grid is coming. They’ll be able to track their usage by the unit’s ID# and bill accordingly based on estimated CO2 emissions that can be blamed on it, same for all your modern appliances.

    Yup, Kalifornia’s future sure is bright (when the skies are clear during the daytime).

  41. This is good. The judge pointed out that a fossil carbon fee has merits but that those merits were not considered. We are all agreed that carbon trading is much less than perfect. If one agrees that too much fossil CO2 is a problem, then a phased-in fossil fee returned as a universal tax cut is the most efficient way to fix it.

    And fossil CO2 is a problem [because too much of any CO2 is a problem and] because all other CO2 emissions are automatically offset. That is, fossil carbon was captured at least thousands of years ago, where as non-fossil sources like breathing, burning wood, burning cow farts, what have you, release carbon that was captured recently. Therefore, the hard circumstances of non-fossil CO2 sources ensure that concentrations do not change abruptly.

    Constant and atmosphere-wide increased warming from abruptly-increased CO2 with tell tale fossil isotope signatures causes a positive feedback from water to cause even more warming. Warming leads to decreased crop yields due to high temperatures. Warming leads to more droughts, punctuated by flood, which also decrease harvests and cause economic damage to property.

    Fossil energy is old technology. The government should promote newer, better technology. Because we learn more about science as time goes by, and because earlier unforeseen results of any given technology build up over time, technology cannot be allowed to stand still, though it would disrupt institutional corporations.

    The best way for the government to promote non-fossil technology is to lower costs on every other activity (a universal tax cut, except on fossils). It makes no sense to pay for this universal cut with a universal increase. It makes sense to pay for it with an increase on fossils. And the most direct route, with least overhead and shirking, is via production and import.

    Fossil production and import costs effect most of the entire economy at the moment. That is, they ripple through most of the economy. But if the tax burden were shifted strongly toward fossils, the economy would begin disconnecting from fossils. Arguing that we cannot ever leave fossils is sad and defeatist. It is worshiping a coal calf, covered in oil, with fossil methane coming out its backside.

  42. One thing I haven’t seen mentioned is that implementation of a straight carbon tax (which the law suit suggests is preferred by the Irritated Ones over a cap-and-trade system) paves the way for government to quite literally tax us for breathing…

  43. CO2 is an essential component in the life cycle of phytoplankton and landbased plants, O2 is a waste product (one that animals tend to like I might add). California Man, in his limitless wisdom is out to make-like a lemming. Who will same him? (Kind’a sounds like Simon LaGree is back in the picture again. Can’t Hollywood write anything NEW?)

  44. Anderlan;
    So much error and blown logic in one place! But let’s focus on one instance: your assertion that warming hurts crops and leads to more droughts. Neither is true. Cooling messes up the hydrological cycle far more, leading to droughts. Crop yields have increased steadily with increased CO2 and warming.

    You are attempting to tax and suppress a benefit. Not smart.

  45. I keep reading that a carbon tax on fossil fuels off set by a return or reduction of other taxes is acceptable.
    Possibly true–if you really believe taxes are ever returned or off set. I don’t ;>

  46. To M.A.DeLuca:

    My apologies. I read your your post as carbon dioxide. I guess what threw me was the comment that it was naturally occurring. Since any incomplete oxidation of carbon will produce CO, I suppose forest fires produce some CO. But most atmospheric chemists don’t consider CO part of the natural atmosphere.

    But now I see your point. What is air pollution? A broad definition might be: anything we humans don’t want in the air. The definition the Clean Air Act uses is things in the air that are harmful to human health and welfare. This leads to some problems. Particulate matter, such as soot from coal fired furnaces has been a known health hazard for years. However, when EPA established particulate matter standards it didn’t specify what kinds particulates. Any particles that got into your lungs were bad. Therefore they set a standard for particles less than 2.5 microns in size. Guess what area will never meet that standard? In Arizona, the county that Phoenix is in is one of the counties that is not in compliance with the standard. Probably never will be, because of blowing desert dust. Is the naturally occurring desert dust a pollutant?

    Another example. As I said in my earlier post, the photochemical reaction between NO and hydrocarbons produces ozone. Ozone has also has been shown to be health hazard. Ozone also has a National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS). In L.A. Motor vehicles are the primary cause. But photochemical smog also occurs over rural portions of Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee. Turns out that the pine trees in these areas give off hydrocarbon gases that also form photochemical smog. The Smokey Mountains are so named because of this smog. Are the pine trees polluting the air? They are the reason some areas in the South don’t meet the NAAQS for ozone.

    So, I agree with you, it all depends on how you want to define pollution. But in the two examples, the regulated things in the air are known health hazards, whether they are produced naturally or by man.

    CO2 is different. It is not a health hazard. It may be harmful to human welfare, IF , not only the IPPC models are correct, but also all the computer studies that assume they are correct and then go on to predict some dire consequence of this warming. That is what the skepticism is about. The models and computer studies don’t stand up to rigorous scrutiny.

  47. old geezeer — your post has an error!

    old engineer says:
    March 23, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    the IPPC models … and computer studies don’t stand up to rigorous even casual scrutiny.

    There; all fiksed!
    ;)

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